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Literature / The Bliss Bakery

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Yummy, yummy, yummy…
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"Your mother and I call this place the "Library", even though there's only one book here. This book is more important than all of the books of the country. So, we really have a library"

Albert Bliss

Rosemary Bliss and her siblings are descendants of the ancient Bliss family. Their family’s cookbook, called the “Bliss Cookery Booke” contains magical recipes, and the baked goods sold in the family bakery improve the life in their hometown in subtle yet mysterious ways.

Disaster strikes when the parents have to leave the town for an extended period of time and Lily, a distant relatives of the Bliss family, who know about the “Booke” and want to have it for her Evil Organisation, "Perforated Ladle", comes to visit them.

The Bliss Bakery series follows Rosemary’s (mis)adventures in trying to protect the book and its (somewhat dangerous) contents from the claws of evil relatives and, of course, the big industry. It consists, by far, of three book:

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  • Bliss: The first book of the series and the one that started it all.
  • A Dash Of Magic: A sequel to Bliss that takes place in Paris and it's about Rose and her family participating in a cooking contest, in order to get the "Booke" back from Aunt Lily.
  • Bite-Sized Magic: A sequel to A Dash of Magic, where is Rose is kidnapped by an Evil Organisation and is forced to bake sweets and cakes for them.

The Bliss Bakery Series contains examples of:

  • Action Mom: Perdu Bliss. The first chapter has her rushing to a storm, holding a blue bowl to collect some thunders and save the life of a kid, despite the obvious dangers.
  • Adults Are Useless: Averted in many occasions (thanks to family values being the Central Theme of the book series):
    • Rosemary and her siblings' actions make things worse when they bake a Reverse Pie to turn things back to normal, so they need Aunt Lily's help, who states she is experienced.
    • During the cooking contest in Paris, Perdu, Albert and Balthazar translate the recipes that Rose and Thyme will use.
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  • Aerith and Bob: All the members of the Bliss family, Rose, Thyme, Perdu, Albert, Leigh, Sage have normal names. And then, there's Balthazar, Filbert and Albatross.
  • An Aesop:
    • Just because someone is beautiful, it doesn't mean they are necessarily nice persons, as seen with Aunt Lily.
    • Always believe in yourself and never give up.
  • All Love Is Unrequited: At first, Rose believes that that's the case with her and Devine, the boy she loves, as they have never talked before. Later, however, Devine asks her to dance, compliments her for her looks, sends her a video with him and all of Calamity Falls citizens to wish her "Good luck" for the cooking contest and invites her to go a walk with him at the end of the third book.
  • Always Chaotic Evil: The members of "Perforated Ladle" want to take the "Booke" for themselves and use it for their own evil plans.
  • Arc Words: "Booke". Being the most important object in the entire series, evil people would of course want it for themselves. In fact, Lily's mind is so full of it, that she uses it as the password to her hotel room.
  • The Artifact: The eponymous "Booke". The first book had made it clear how important the recipes were the citizens of "Calamity Falls" and the plot of the second is focus entire on getting it back from the hands of Lily. However, it was mentioned barely in the third book and Rose didn't even need it to cook. Justified, as Lily had left some recipes before she disappeared.
  • Artifact of Doom: The Bliss' "Booke" could become this in the hands of evil, who would use it to enslave the whole country or for their own selfish reasons. Distant relatives of the Bliss Family, like Aunt Lily constantly try to take it for themselves. Lily managed that and used some of its recipes to become famous via her TV show, "Magic In 30 minutes". Also, when Rose is kidnapped by the "Glorious" Industry, they force her to bake cakes from the "Booke", in order to make their sweets the most popular ones in the country.
  • Artifact Title: Only the first book takes place in the Bliss Bakery. The second takes place in France and the third, in an Industry.
  • Bee Afraid: In order to get rid of the journalists, Perdu, Balthazar and Albert make some special cookies from the sting of Fearless Bees.
  • Big Bad Ensemble: At one point in the third book, the members of "Perforated Ladle" meet in Mr. Butter's Industry to discuss their Evil Plan.
  • Birthday Episode: More like "Birthday Chapter". The last chapter in the third book is about celebrating Rose's thirteenth birthday. Her family makes her a birthday cake with magic candles, which fulfill every wish when you blow them away.
  • Bittersweet Ending: All the books in the trilogy end in this way:
    • In the first book, Aunt Lily, who turned out to be evil all along, finally leaves, but not without taking the "Booke" with her.
    • In the second installment of the series, Rose and her family manage to get the "Booke" back. However, "The Secret Knowledge of Albatross" is missing and it's implied that she might try to steal it again at one point in the future.
    • In the third book, Rose is rescued from her evil kidnappers, the boy she loves acknowledges her at last and asks her for a walk and she is about yo enjoy the summer, but she receives a letter from Aunt Lily who threatens her that "this isn't over yet" and that she will return.
  • Central Theme: Family and its importance towards the young protagonist's life. By loving her, always helping her out and supporting her in any given chance, Rose is able to overcome her fears and anxiety and succeed. With the presence of her brothers in the kitchen, cooking is more fun to her and, thanks to both them and her parents, she managed to win the cooking contest.
    • Another contribution to that support is the scene where Mr. Butter, who has never received family love, immediately bursts into tears when he tastes a magic cookie and quits from "Perforated Ladle".
  • Cerebus Rollercoaster: The first book (being targeted to middle-aged girls) starts quiet light-hearted (with the exception of the last chapters, where Rose has a conversation with a deep voice from the abyss of their storage and almost leaving her family and running away with Aunt Lily). The second one is far more dramatic and has a dramatic aesthetic compared to the first installment. And the third one goes back to be light-hearted, despite Rose's kidnapping in the third chapter.
  • Cloudcuckooland: The Bliss Bakery is this when the family bakes. With the magic ingredients used to make cakes, the food is either gonna explode, change colour, size, height, create fog, bad smells and various others things that are too many to be listed here.
  • Coming-of-Age Story: The book trilogy is about the (mis)adventures of Rosemary Bliss, a twelve-year old girl whose family happens to own a magic bakery. At the beginning of the series, Rose's problems are the ones of a typical teen girl (being in love with a guy who doesn't seem to love her back, not knowing what to do with her life and having low self-esteem). After the events of the books, Rose becomes more sure for herself and knows what to do with her life.
  • Comfort Food:
    • Rosemary’s comfort foods include cake.
    • Of course, the family also can make food that comforts a little more efficient than the ordinary comfort food.
  • Common Tongue: Averted with sasanic, an ancient language where some of the "Booke"'s recipes are written. According to Balthazar, it's one of the most difficult languages to translate.
  • The Conspiracy: The members of "Perforated Ladle" plan to steal the "Booke" (spoiler: in which they succeed, thanks to Lily Le Fey]]) and use its recipes for their evil plans. Specifically, they tried firstly to close all the local and small bakeries thanks to a crazy law ( was a success at first) and then, to get rid of their good counterpart and main rival, Cathy Ciggan ( in which, they failed).
  • Contrasting Sequel Antagonist: In the first two books, the main antagonist of the series was Lily Le Fey, a beautiful woman who wanted to steal the "Booke" and use it to become famous via her TV show "Magic In 30 minutes". In the third one, however, the villain is Mr. Butter, an owner of the most gigantic bakery industry in America, who also wants to steal the "Booke", or in this case, some of its recipes, and get rid of Cathy Ciggan, his main rival, who, unlike him, collaborates with other small bakeries and makes sweets from organic ingredients.
  • Cool Uncle: Aunt Lily is so cool, beautiful, has travelled in so many places, knows many exotic recipes and it's just the most fun and enjoyable person to be around! Rose wants to be like her (at least, before it turned out she was evil all along), and Rose’s brother Thyme has a crush on her.
  • Cooking Duel: In the second part of the series, Rose has to win a baking duel against her Aunt, Lily. Did we mention that this duel takes place in Paris?
  • Crouching Moron, Hidden Badass: Sage might not be the brightest of the siblings (heck, he might be second, following Thyme), but he has his fair share of moments where he uses his brain and his talent in acting to save the day.
  • Darker and Edgier: "A Dash of Magic", the sequel to "The Bliss Bakery", has a darker tone compared to the previous book.
  • Deal with the Devil: Happens to Rose twice:
    • When she finds herself alone in the storage, fog starts to appear and a deep voice from the underworld talks to her and suggests to use "Aphrodite's emulsion" in order to become beautiful and gain the affection of everyone. Rose fantasizes at first all the good things that could happen to her after that (everyone loving her, her siblings starting to respect her, her parents letting her use the "Booke"), but realises that the result would be her leaving her town and abandoning her family, so she neglects the offer.
    • Also happens when Aunt Lily invites her to go with her and make her famous via her TV show. She suggests feeding her family magic biscuits so they would forget that them and the "Booke" ever existed (just like she did with her parents). Rose is about to follow her, but changes her mind at the last second (much to Lily's dismay).
  • Discreet Dining Disposal: Averted. When Aunt Lily cooks dinner for the Bliss family, Thyme is seen consuming it (and praising the cooker), despite being stated that he only eats pasta. Either because the food is really that good or because he doesn't want to upset Aunt Lily (whom he has a crush on).
  • Distracted by the Sexy: After a bunch of librarians eat a bunch of failed Cookies of Truth, one of them expresses her disdain over the Bakery's wallpaper and calls the one who chose it an "idiot". Chip bursts out and declares that he is that one "idiot" who chose it. This stops the librarian's ramping to admire his muscular body.
  • The Dog Bites Back:
    • After an entire book where the family tries to get the "Booke" back from Lily, they succeed not only that, but to ruin her career via making her express her jealousy and range over the fact that Rose beat her in the Cooking Contest.
    • Mr. Butter spent the majority of the third book abusing and belittling Margie and the rest of the chefs in his Industry, Margie snaps out and feeds him some magic sweets that makes him close the company.
  • Early Installment Weirdness: The first book is pretty light-hearted (despite the downer ending) as it retells Rose's misadventures when they try some recipes fron the "Booke".
  • End of the World as We Know It: What could happen if the "Booke" fell into evil hands. Every citizen would become a slave and Rose's family would be forced to flee (although this is all to Rose's fantasies).
  • Evil All Along: Hey, Rose, Aunt Lily may not be that bad… oh, wait, you were right, she wanted to steal the "Booke" from the beginning.
  • Eviler Than Thou: Aunt Lily and Mr. Butter. Aunt Lily wants the "Booke" simply to become famous via her television show, while Mr. Butter plans on enslaving the entire country through his candies.
  • Family Theme Naming: The Bliss family seems to name their kids after plants. Rose and thyme's names, especially, are named after plants used as seasoning.
  • Fantastic Racism: Gas believes that his own cat species, Scottish cats, are the best among the cat kind.
  • Fighter, Mage, Thief: Chip is the muscular and large worker in the "Bliss" bakery, Rose is a teen girl who uses magic ingredients to make cakes and Lily is an exotic mysterious lady who steals the book, at the end.
  • For Want of a Nail: Assuming Lily was right, if the argument between Albatross and Filbert had never happened, then the two families wouldn't have stopped talking to each other.
  • Foreshadowing: The events that lead to the conclusion that Lily indeed wanted to steal the "Booke":
    • Rose finds a purple checker in the fridge door and, since Aunt Lily's pants are decorated with purple checkers, she immediately assumes that she was spying on them. Her brother, Thyme, dismisses this, saying that Aunt Lily wanted cafe.
    • When Lily discovers "Albatross' Hidden Knowledge", a part of the "Booke" with Albatross' recipes, she says that she had heard about that, but she wasn't sure if it truly existed. Rose immediately snaps and tells her that she (Lily) didn't even knew that the "Booke" existed at the first place. Lily tries to save this by telling her that she knew that her great grandfather had written some recipes of his own.
    • While Lily was looking at the "Booke"'s recipes, Rose notices that she has a greedy and evil smile on her face.
  • The Good, the Bad, and the Evil: Rose's rivalry between her and Aunt Lily doesn't compare with her and Mr. Butter, the owner of a big organisation who wants to enslave the entire country.
    • "Perforated Ladle" is the evil organisation that both Lily and Mr. Butter work (or used to work) and has even greater plans than both of them.
  • Great Big Book of Everything: The "Booke" contains every recipe that can solve one person's problems. It also contains (actually, used to contain, until Aunt Lily stole it) "Albatross' Hidden Knowledge", a small grey book full of evil recipes.
  • Hidden Villain: The first two books mentioned "Perforated Ladle", but we didn't see any of its members (besides Lily and her assistant). In the third installment, we finally meet them and hear of their Evil Plan about taking over the world via Mr. Butter's Industry.
  • How Do I Shot Web?: When Rose and Thyme first tried a recipe from the "Booke", called Love Cookies, they had a hard time understanding what words like "half a fist" or "six songs" or "seven flames" actually meant when they had to measure the ingredients or the time and the temperature that were needed in order to prepare them, until they found a tab in the fridge explaining for them.
  • The "I Love You" Stigma: Thanks to some Love Cookies, Mr.Baseball finally declares his love and affection towards Ms.Slith, by climbing a fake Eiffel tower upon a local "french-themed" restaurant, where everybody would watch him. To emphasize his feelings, he reveals his jersey where it's written "Marry me!" and his underwear, where it's written "Say yes!".
  • Imagine Spot:
    • Rose has some nightmarish spots, where the entire country is enslaved and her family is forced to flee and ask for food.
    • She also has some romantic ones where her and the boy she loves, Devine, go on a date.
  • Impossible Leavening: This trope is justified by magical ingredients. Which make it possible to ruin kitchens on a much larger scale. The positive side of this is impossibly fluffy, airy cakes.
  • Impossibly Delicious Food: Given the fact that Rosemary's parents are not only excellent cookers, but their foods also contain magical ingredients that makes them even more tasty, it's that.
  • Innocently Insensitive: When Rose and Thyme clean the square after a fierce disco party, Thyme says to her that he liked the experience, for he was able to work with his "cool" aunt Lily. This hurts deeply Rose for she thought that he did it because he wanted to help her and her family.
  • Insistent Terminology: It's the "Booke", not the "Book".
  • Intellectual Animal:
    • There is a talking cat who at least fancies himself cleverer than his human owner. He does save the day on occasion.
    • Also, a mouse, Zach, who plays the flute better than any human.
  • Love Potion: The Bliss children get it into their heads to play matchmaker for two people who are obviously attracted to each other, but to shy to act on it. Naturally, as per the rule of drama, something goes wrong. The magical love muffins are so overdosed that the male victim climbs onto a fake eiffel tower to publicly declare his love. The woman he loves is, of course, completely weirded out by this as she knows and loves him as a shy and gentle man.
  • Luke, I Am Your Father: When Lily meets Rose, she instantly reveals that she is her aunt. note 
  • Ludd Was Right: Subverted in the third book. Mr. Butter believes that their advanced technology in their Industry is way better than the traditional way done by small local bakeries, because they can make much more sweets in less time and full with ingredients that won't rot the product. Rose doesn't even want to know what's inside those ingredients.
  • Magic Is Evil: Played With. Perdu and Albert' main reason on why they bake magic cakes is because they want to help the citizens of their town. Rose even wanted to try for the same reasons (even though her parents forbade her). The point is that magic was always good by the people from Filbert's family, since their objection was to improve or to save people's lives. Then comes, Albatross' family, who wants to steal the "Booke" either to be famous (like Aunt Lily) either to enslave the entire population (like Mr. Butter). The ingredients they use are straight up weird (like tears from they eye of an evil wizard) and the result is just chaotic.
  • Magical Incantation: Mostly averted, since the ingredients do the majority of the job, but they are examples where the characters have to ham a poetic line or to say some words, for a spell to work.
  • Meaningful Name: Lily Le Fay. Lilies are often used as funeral flowers and thus considered bad luck to bring home. Le Fay references Morgan Le Fay, who is often portrayed as the villain in Arthurian legend. Both hint at Lily’s role as the antagonist who causes trouble after her visit.
  • Muscles Are Meaningless: Rose, at one moment, teases Thyme that he only uses his muscles to impress girls. This was done to make him bring the stereo, which is pretty heavy, even for him.
  • Not Like Other Girls: Said word for word to Rose by her mother.
    “You’re not like other girls,” she’d once said. “You’re so good at math.”
    Also stated later: Unlike most girls at school... Rose never cared much about what she wore.
  • Secret Ingredient: All magical baked goods contain at least one secret magical ingredient:
    • Love Muffins contain eggs from Erotocritos of Secret.
    • Cookies of Truth contain the breathing of a person who has never lied.
    • Reverse Pie contains the Tears of an Evil Wizard.
  • Non-Human Sidekick: One relative of the Bliss family owns a talking cat, which plays the role of sidekick to the children.
  • Noodle Incident: In Bite-sized magic, Marge (a chef that works at Mr.Butter's industry) admits that she had once stole horse. How, why and what happened afterwards is unknown…
  • Ship Tease: Rose and Devine, even from the first book:
    • When Rose, Lily and her siblings make a disco party in order to bring the citizens of Calamity Falls back to normal, Devine asks Rose to dance with him, compliments her looks and he is even about to kiss her, until Sage interrupts the whole thing.
    • The next day, they have their first full conversation!
    • While Rose is away in Paris and she is participating in a global Cooking Contest, Devine sends her a video where him and the rest of the citizens of Calamity Falls wish her good luck.
    • At the end of Bite-sized magic, Devine asks Rose to join him for a ride.
  • Talking Animal: A talking cat makes an appearance in the second installment of the series, along with a talking mouss.
  • Theme Naming: Rosemary, Thyme, and Lily are all plants. Rosemary and Thyme are both plants used as seasoning.
  • Truth Serums: The Cookies of Truth make people tell the truth. At least, if they contain. Without milk, their eaters won't reveal the truth, but instead, all their mean thoughts about others, resulting to chaos. Rose and Thyme learn this the hard way when they bake several cookies for Ms. Havegood, who is such a bad liar, but instead, everyone else in the town ended up eating them after a misunderstanding.
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